Vermont Gov. Phil Scott (R) signed legislation on Wednesday that bans the usage of this so-called”homosexual panic” defense in courts of law.
“With this legislation, Republicans, Democrats and Progressives alike send a message to Vermonters–your identity shouldn’t be an excuse for somebody to cause you injury,” that the two-term Republican said in a message upon signing the historic legislation. “This bill does is ensure a victim’s sexual orientation or gender identity can’t be utilized to defend or justify a criminal action, or reduce a sentence”
The protection is a legal strategy utilized by a suspect on trial for a violent offense in which they typically attempt to supplement a temporary insanity defense by arguing that an unwanted advance from a homosexual person led them to such a state of anger they admittedly committed a brutal crimeup to and including murder.
A company strategy known as the”trans panic” defense is occasionally employed by defendants who have sex or differently hook with a transgender woman, murder or attack them, then claim they have been unaware of the victim’s transgender status.
Scholars have noted that these plans have almost exclusively been applied by men in the USA for years, its usage studied and monitored by one researcher from statistics since 1970, a year following the Stonewall uprising heralded the modern LGBTQ rights motion.
Shortly before that age, 1 sexuality researcher published in 1967:”Not rarely, so-called homosexuals have been killed with impunity in some European nations and in the United States many especially, as lately as the past couple of decades ago’
In recent years, however, a few countries have moved to get rid of the defense entirely.
Starting in 2006, California amended its penal code in a small way that tried to deal with the homosexual panic defense tangentially, by including jury instructions that bias, sympathy, prejudice or public opinion couldn’t affect jurors’ decisions. A secondary directive was issued to district attorneys that taught them to use the jury instructions in reference to a criminal defendants’ terror defense.
In 2014, California became the first state to ban the gay and trans terror protections as a matter of law.
Vermont’s efforts, by H.128, create the Green Mountain State that the 14th country to enact such a ban.
The bill has been passed all-but unanimously.
The legislation had been co-sponsored by Rep. Mari Cordes, a Democrat who represents Lincoln, and Rep. Taylor Small, a Democrat who represents Winooski and is the sole open transgender performer of the Vermont House of Representatives.
Vermont has officially become the 14th country to ban the’LGBTQ+ Panic Defense’! Today, I’m grateful for the unanimous support of the Legislative & Executive branches in effectively departure H.128. Thank you @GovPhilScott for signing on today.https://t.co/U6ERLVD4WM
— Taylor Small (@TaylorSmallVT) May 5, 2021
Similar legislation was or has been considered in several additional countries, but Scott was praised for being a Republican signing the law when additional state politicians at his celebration increasingly have passed numerous anti-transgender laws.
“While that effort is a step in the perfect path, we understand there is still much more work to perform to make sure all Vermonters, irrespective of identity, feel safe and protected in this state,” the governor added in his speech thanking the bill’s sponsors.
“Trans visibility matters.”
[picture via DON EMMERT/AFP through Getty Images]The article Vermont’s GOP Governor Signs Bipartisan Legislation to Ban Gay and Trans’Panic’ Defense first emerged on Law & Crime.